Last modified: 7:58 AM Saturday, 14 January 2017

One thing missing here

A Yuletide parable

In the name of verisimilitude, Tiny Tim (in his role as the middle class) should also be dragging behind him on a makeshift sled an infant pauper, begotten and forgotten by Scrooge. Meanwhile, a loquacious friend of Scrooge’s — fat of paunch and brown of nose — should be constantly reminding Tiny Tim that the infant is an unfair burden on him and counseling leaving it to freeze, the better to devote his remaining energies to the cheerful service of his benefactor, Scrooge. Even as Tim objects that he can do no such thing...

GOP 'Christmas Carol'

A kleptoplutocratic “Christmas Carol”. Not seen: the infant pauper.
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... Just out of sight beyond the house on the far right, his counselor’s Pumblechookian sentiments are coincidentally being typeset in the scholarly columns of the Evening Tidings, and then are heard from the lips of every informed reader: All is right with the world, save one tiny fault. Benefactor Scrooge is enjoying the fruits of his labors, but not with sufficient attentiveness on Tim’s part, and an injurious fall could befall Scrooge at any time. This, all the best people must agree, was entirely due to the misplaced efforts of those who failed to see the moral duty to let the pauper take ownership of his own fate.

From the pulpits of the surrounding churches, clergymen remind their flocks at close of vespers to mention Scrooge in their bedtime devotions, and to petition for divine guidance in relieving Tim’s outdated prejudices against letting the fittest survive and permitting the weak to perish according to the ordinance of heaven, that they become not a hindrance to their ill-advised supporters nor a danger to the benefactors of the kingdom, and many more words to this effect.

Soon comes the anger: a group of neighbors outraged at what they have heard, resentful of the unnatural parasitic behavior of the pauper, seething when they see it dragged past. New biographies are invented hourly for it, in each of which it is more a vampire from birth — nay, from conception! — than in the last. Among these neighbors is a friend of Scrooge, a fellow tycoon on a smaller scale, and he passes the word to his friends.

To let such a thing perish (presumably for want of its accustomed diet of human blood, although hypothermia was an acceptable alternative) was a clear duty to all of these citizens, but the law and Tiny Tim stood between them its and fulfilment. They could not kill it, but who said it had to have a good life? Who said they couldn’t make it grow up to wish it had been left to freeze?

And they smiled, and laid their plans.


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